Issue No.225 – March 2023 : Shabaan 1444
Ramadhaan develops a true spirit of social belonging, unity, brotherhood and equality before Allah Ta’ala. This is a natural outcome of the various acts of worship that people fulfil during this month of sacrifice, sympathy and community. They are one with the entire global Muslim community in observing the same duty of fasting, at the same time, for the same motives and for the same end. They all fast from dawn to dusk, worshiping the one Almighty God and collectively experiencing feelings of hunger and thirst. Out of this physical unity, their hearts are joined and brought together. This is the beauty of Islam where an external action has a higher goal as it ultimately binds members of society together. In fact, Ramadhaan weaves the hearts of people together in overcoming societal challenges.
While this principle is in force during the fasting hours, the contrast at the breaking of the fast (iftaar) between those who have food in abundance and may over indulge, and those that merely get by with a few morsels, is a stark reminder of rights; the rights of your body and the rights of your neighbour who goes to bed hungry.
Of the first, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has said: “The son of Adam does not fill any vessel worse than his stomach. It is sufficient for the son of Adam to eat a few mouthfuls, to keep him going….” Of the latter situation he stated: “He is not a Believer whose stomach is filled while his neighbour goes hungry.”
This Ramadhaan, let us uphold our body’s right on consuming Halaal and exercise restraint in our eating as commanded for both our physical and spiritual well-being. If we are able to control and limit our consumption to that which is Halaal, we will be able to control and direct our actions towards righteousness! The connection between Halaal consumption and good actions is clearly established from the Quraanic verse that states: “O Messengers of Allah, eat of the pure things and do good works!” (Chapter 23 – Verse 51).
And as for our neighbour, friend, employee relative or wayfarer, let us undertake the blessed act of feeding them. You will receive barakah (blessings) beyond imagination and immense satisfaction of personally upholding an important tenet of Islam and following a practice of our pious predecessors.
These meaningful deeds will save us from what the Final Messenger (peace be upon him) cautioned us against, i.e. a Ramadhaan of rituals where we would “receive nothing from the fast except hunger and thirst.”
It is our prayer that this higher purpose is kept uppermost in our minds, as a moral compass, and with determined effort to spiritually uplift ourselves in this blessed month, towards shaping our conduct for the year ahead, Aameen.
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